The Music Theory You Need to Focus on First

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Most of the time the one thing that holds you back from really understanding Music Theory or using an idea on several different chords is a really simple part of what is going on.

A big part of what having a good overview of music theory is to be able to think in different layers. You can think of the notes you play as individual notes but also as groups of notes like arpeggios, scales or other melodic ideas. But you need the basic overview of the material to be able to do this,

0:00 Intro – The Basics Are What is Holding You Back
0:21 Three Layers of understanding what is going on
0:37 High-Level Tricks with no foundation.
1:14 Learning the instrument and tying it to Music Theory
1:50 #1 Using Other Arpeggios Over A Chord
2:35 How To Relate an upper-structure to a root note
3:09 Analysis of “The Fake Michael Brecker Lick”
3:39 Build your options from knowing what it is.
3:56 Exploring diatonic sus4 triads
4:26 #2 Pentatonics Over Extended Chords
4:54 Bm Pentatonic over Cmaj7
5:24 How Theory Can Help You Use this better.
6:03 #3 Understanding How Chord Progressions Move
6:25 Fm6-Cmaj7 example
7:01 Voice-leading and how you use it.
7:56 #4 How Do You Learn This?
8:14 Not when you solo, but maybe in on the Bus?
8:47 Connecting different types of information
9:05 Like the video? Check out my Patreon Page!

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Comments

Jens Larsen says:

What would you consider the most basic Music Theory to check out? Or a good exercise?
Content:

0:00 Intro – The Basics Are What is Holding You Back

0:21 Three Layers of understanding what is going on

0:37 High-Level Tricks with no foundation.

1:14 Learning the instrument and tying it to Music Theory

1:50 #1 Using Other Arpeggios Over A Chord

2:35 How To Relate an upper-structure to a root note

3:09 Analysis of "The Fake Michael Brecker Lick"

3:39 Build your options from knowing what it is.

3:56 Exploring diatonic sus4 triads

4:26 #2 Pentatonics Over Extended Chords

4:54 Bm Pentatonic over Cmaj7

5:24 How Theory Can Help You Use this better.

6:03 #3 Understanding How Chord Progressions Move

6:25 Fm6-Cmaj7 example

7:01 Voice-leading and how you use it.

7:56 #4 How Do You Learn This?

8:14 Not when you solo, but maybe in on the Bus?

8:47 Connecting different types of information

9:05 Like the video? Check out my Patreon Page!

Anthony Demitre says:

the most basic Music Theory to check would be using drop 2s on a tune and trying to connect them within 1 or 2 positions on the neck, Thanks Jens

Willy Evans says:

A lot of people don't like Mondays. I love them as they bring another great lesson from Jens.

Rayer Scarpensael says:

The only reason I suck and probably always will at identifying rapidly the chird notes in a scale is the guitar neck itself. I am also a piano player, and all the notes are spread out in front of you, easy to read at any moment. No wonder we always search for shortcuts at the guitar neck and tricks with scale forms and not the notes itself, as with its notes repeating itself in various places and not in line like on keyboard it is just often beyond the average brain learning time if not playing 8 hours a day.

Frederick Thorne says:

very helpful, thanks!!

David Godfrey says:

How does one contact you about pricing for skype lessons?

Meruemu says:

Nice timming since i just got my fretting hand injured, i'm gonna stay away from my guitar for a few weeks. Thanks for these ideas i can work on Jens !

Don Lessnau says:

The editing on these vids is atrocious. Annoying and irritating. Is it really necessary to eliminate a second or two between sentences? Is this culture so manic that you're obsessed with having absolutely no dead air at all? Seriously, why not talk like a normal conversation. The info would be better presented and allow viewers to absorb what you're saying. Does it really make that much difference whether the vid is 15 minutes or 12? Stupid, horrid editing.

downhill2400 says:

Very interesting lessons here!

spakuloid says:

So all we need to know is all the notes in all the chords and how they relate to every other chord, mode, scale and arpeggio in all keys and in every position. Got it.

Khabib Nurmagemedov says:

Quality teaching as always, Jens!

lone wolf says:

Hi mate, good point I actually.
I look at dm7 as As the first inversion of fmaj7 same Gm7 as the Bb, or D7 f#dim.
Can that be correct?
It's just the notes are almost the same and it really easy to visualise

Al Cher says:

Thank you Jens, very good topic! I once came across a video of Chris Standring saying 'play Bm penta over Cmaj chord', and that's when I first thought this way about scales over chords – that we are picking certain notes that sound strong together from Lydian scale to emphasize the specific sound and at the same time outline the chord

Perry Fogelman says:

Man, this was a great one.

high information noise says:

this channel is so fucking amazing. I love your style as a teacher but I'm still really just a beginner and instead of just taking off into the dust with theory that's beyond me, you find ways to constantly have topics that are relevant to my actual playing without being a rehash of a previous video of yours or something. good man

Mrius86 says:

What I used to do (it's years ago now) was to record a C7 (135b7, nothing more) pedal and then improvise, in turn, with all the one-note formulas throughout the chromatic scale. What's the point of improvising with only the 3rd degree of a dominant function? Wouldn't that just sound incredibly bland and "inside" to you? Yes, but it will help your ear to really internalize that specific sound and it will help you appreciate chord tones more. Then when you start to expand with b2/b9 you really have that dominant sound internalized and can really appreciate the expansions you are making.

Then I would do the same with all the major and minor triads. I made notes and analyses along the way. The C major triad sounded inside, while the B major triad sounded very outside and dissonant.

Recording is essential. Unless you are a musical genius (then you wouldn't be reading this anyhow!) it would be impossible to stay completely objective while playing and improvising. Especially when exploring new sounds like this, that's why recording one's own playing is so valuable.

Harry M. says:

Great video! Important topic and very well explained!

Hüseyin Dalbudak says:

Camera work, vocabulary, explanation…. everything is just perfect man, thank you m/

RC32 says:

Awesome job on showing what you should prioritize first in a rather broad and complex topic! Great work!

Daniel Boisvert-couture says:

Such a good video. It should become the most viewed video in the history of jazz educational videos !

Harsh Shandilya says:

0:54 Best way to explain concepts. Jens's editing skills are at another level now.

zenncatt says:

Excellent lesson. Thank you Jens.

Lunar Orbit says:

I would also recommend Rick Beato's book on theory. So much info in there.

Rodolfo Amaral says:

5:20 This is really gold tip! I wish someone told years ago

lucas engleder says:

Do you have some new camera setup or something? It looks absolutely stunning

Darko Pesevski says:

holy crap that sweet double stops intro bossa <3 Great video as always Jens !!!

binface9 says:

Thanks, I was looking for new ideas to keep me awake at night.

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